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Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

View Poll Results: If you had access to any bike, what kind of bike would you bring for the GDMBR?
Dual suspension mountain bike 1 2.50%
Front suspension hardtail mountain bike 13 32.50%
Fully rigid mountain bike 10 25.00%
26" Touring bike 5 12.50%
700c Touring bike 3 7.50%
Cyclocross bike 4 10.00%
Longtail bike (ex. Surly Big Dummy) 0 0%
Other 4 10.00%
Voters: 40. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-02-08, 11:41 PM   #1
bokes
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What kind of bike for the Great Divide?

In case you don't know about it, it's 2,711 miles long, 85% on dirt and gravel roads, 10% pavement and 5% singletrack. Many of the dirt roads are washboarded. And if you've already ridden it, which bike would you use if you rode it again?

Last edited by bokes; 11-02-08 at 11:54 PM.
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Old 11-03-08, 12:03 AM   #2
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In case you don't know about it, it's 2,711 miles long, 85% on dirt and gravel roads, 10% pavement and 5% singletrack. Many of the dirt roads are washboarded. And if you've already ridden it, which bike would you use if you rode it again?
Best would be a Moots YBB. But, as my pappy says, people in hell want icewater I've ridden pieces of it in Colorado. Best bet would probably be a hardtail with a trailer and a front shock that can be locked out. Simpler is better. Anything that requires too many specialized parts would not be good to take along.
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Old 11-03-08, 12:12 AM   #3
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I think a Salsa Fargo would work well. It is a 29er made for expedition touring. The guys from Riding the Spine use a Surly Big Dummy and a Surly Pugsley.
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Old 11-03-08, 01:53 AM   #4
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Ops I forgot the 29er option. In this case I guess it would be best to vote Fully Rigid MTB, and for the Fargo to vote 700c Touring.
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Old 11-03-08, 04:39 AM   #5
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not sure if you're talking about the great divide trail in australia ? (aka the national trail)

I rode sections of this on the way up 2 north queensland..... I woudn't do it without shockies, the corrugated roads are pretty intense in parts....

so yeh, i rode a front-suspension (lockable) hardtail mountain bike with a bob ibex trailer

the only thing i would/will change probably is the brakes, hydraulic discies are just a bit to technical for my liking. .though i haven't had any problems... IF i did.... I wouldn't know how to fix'em
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Old 11-03-08, 05:12 AM   #6
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Great Divide
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Old 11-03-08, 10:38 AM   #7
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I rode the US and Canadian Divide Ride on a rigid Bruce Gordon RNR with racks and panniers with 700x47 tires.

I would not change a thing except to have the <engine> rebuilt.
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Old 11-03-08, 10:58 AM   #8
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I think a Salsa Fargo would work well. It is a 29er made for expedition touring. The guys from Riding the Spine use a Surly Big Dummy and a Surly Pugsley.
I think I'd go with the fargo
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Old 11-03-08, 11:15 AM   #9
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I think a Salsa Fargo would work well. It is a 29er made for expedition touring. The guys from Riding the Spine use a Surly Big Dummy and a Surly Pugsley.
If I had to ride it with a bike I own at the moment I'd use my Surly Big Dummy.
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Old 11-03-08, 11:34 AM   #10
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I voted 26" touring bike, but a longtail is tempting too. Whatever, I'm flexible on that as long as it has a Rohloff hub.
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Old 11-03-08, 11:50 AM   #11
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Actually, I think he's talking about this:

Great Divide Mountain Bike Route
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Old 11-03-08, 12:10 PM   #12
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Actually, I think he's talking about this:

Great Divide Mountain Bike Route
Yes this is the route I was talking about. Here is another link about the route:
http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes/greatdivide.cfm

However for the poll I don't think it matters what route you're thinking of, as long as it's a long distance, off-road mountain bike route, mostly on dirt.

Please don't forget to vote!
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Old 11-03-08, 04:50 PM   #13
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I rode from Mexico to Jackson WY, and can vouch for the following:

Your hands will go numb. There is really no stopping it no matter what you do.

Your rear end will be heavy, can't say what to bring or leave behind but rear shocks take major punishment.

Washboard from hell going on for a hundred miles. I thought I'd kiss the guy driving the grader. But I don't swing that way. So we waved, me enthusiastically, and he seemed to get it.

Go strong. I'd hate to break down out there. Have you ever been really, truly, out there? No one will rescue you for days? If'n you are bleedin' then you be dyin'? It's a funny thing.

Even when you find a bike shop it just might be piss poor. Plans must include, "stay in town for a few days until fedex shows." I'm sure their mammas love them but they are not everything you want.

You will climb until you puke, then you'll recover and climb some more. So, then you descend down a death-road and hope you live. That's how your hands go numb. May take months to get sensation back. Then you climb more because you need to get to water.

AND WELCOME TO NEW MEXICO. Welcome to the GDMBR!
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Old 11-03-08, 05:41 PM   #14
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I hear the blue Madone is so fast you can do it in one day.
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Old 11-03-08, 05:44 PM   #15
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Heidi D. did it on a unsuspended trike. I think any bike will work if you're careful. You're talking dirt/fire roads mostly - I think a susp fork on a hardtail might work well with a BOB. NM area is famous for thorns and nonstop flats.
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Old 11-03-08, 07:15 PM   #16
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I'd love to do the Divide. Maybe in a couple of years. Anyways, I talked with a guy who recently did the divide on a 29er. He said he'd use the 29er if he were to do it again.

He did mention some nasty sections of washboard and some perilous sections where water was scarce. Sounds like a blast.

If I were to do it I'd probably use a 26" hard tail and a BOB trailer mainly because I don't want to add another bike to my fleet.
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